Membership in AWWA automatically secures membership in one of AWWA’s 43 sections, depending on residence or place of principal business activity. Currently, there are 37 sections located in the United States, five in Canada, and one in Mexico. These sections, established under the Governing Documents of AWWA, are autonomous yet interdependent organizations, complete with their own governing bodies, bylaws, and working committees. All sections hold annual meetings or conferences, and conduct a wide range of activities that support the ongoing strategic plan of AWWA.
The section is usually the first place most AWWA members get involved in the Association. Although about one half of the sections have paid staff, the vast majority of the work is done by thousands of dedicated volunteers, who serve on section boards and committees, write newsletters, organize conferences and seminars, give presentations to school children, and pay visits to state legislators and other elected officials.
Sections, working closely with AWWA staff and often with other sections, use the resources of the entire Association to address water supply and public health issues at the local level. The Association’s leadership rises from the section ranks to become members of the AWWA Board of Directors (where all sections are represented), the AWWA councils, divisions, and committees, and even the Executive Committee including the President of AWWA.
Members are the lifeblood of the Association, and the sections are the organized groups that focus their professional energies. Through involvement in section activities, AWWA members become the “first line of contact” with the public, and play a major role in assuring the public that AWWA and its members are dedicated to the promotion of public health and welfare by providing drinking water of both unquestionable quality and sufficient quantity.